How to Grow Vegetables From Scraps

Learn how to grow vegetables from kitchen scraps. Whether you want to plant one thing or grow an entire garden, there are several kinds of foods from the grocery store that can be grown at home. Propagating vegetables is a great way to save money and have fresh vegetables available for your family.

How To Grow Vegetables From Scraps

Not many gardeners know this, but you can easily start a garden using scraps from food you already eat. Kitchen scrap gardening is very similar to starting a normal garden, and propagating vegetables is a great way to grow your own food.

There are all sorts of vegetables you can use the scraps of to start a garden, and there is a good chance you already have some in your home!

Learning about regrowing vegetables from scraps helps save you money and reduce waste because you won't be tossing old food. Instead, start growing vegetable scraps for more food for your family.

For more gardening articles, check out these posts:

What Vegetables Can Be Grown From Scraps

Not all vegetables can be grown from scraps; however, there are still plenty that can be. So what can you grow from scraps?

Following is a rundown on some of the vegetables you can grow at home from scraps by propagating vegetables.

Onions, Garlic, Scallions, and Leeks

These plants from the allium family are easy to grow at home, and they are one of the easiest for regrowing vegetables from scraps. Simply cut off a section of the bulb at the end. Make sure the roots are still attached.

Then place in a shallow dish of water. They will grow quickly, and you can eat the vegetable and regrow more when you are done.

Root Vegetables

Growing root vegetables from scraps is super easy to do. To start, simply take the top where the stems and leaves are adjacent to the root and place them in water for a few days. Soon, you will have brand new tops growing.

From there, you can choose to harvest new vegetables as they ripen off the top, or you can transplant the roots into the ground once they are ready.


Potatoes are great vegetables to grow as they can be used in all sorts of dishes, and they are easy to start. If you're new to propagating vegetables, then I suggest starting with potatoes.

With potatoes, the key is to take a chunk with an ‘eye’ on it, or the dimpled areas from where the roots will be able to grow. For best results, the chunk should have two eyes on it. I cut potatoes in halves or quarters.

Simply let the chunk dry out overnight and then plant it eye-up so that the root can come out of the ground.

You can plant the potatoes right in the ground. We have a lot of clay, so I grow my potatoes in these potato grow bags.

Leafy Greens

Leafy greens such as lettuce are incredibly useful and versatile vegetables for regrowing vegetables from scraps.

There are a few ways to regrow leafy greens from scraps. To start, you can simply keep the rooting section and then place it into a container of water and wait for the second wave of leaves to grow.

You can even re-grow leafy greens from individual leaves. Leafy greens typically continue to grow on the root, so you can simply take what you need and come back later, which can be incredibly helpful.


Celery is one of the easiest vegetables to grow from scraps. Just cut off the bottom section and place it in a shallow dish with warm water.

Then place it in a sunny and fairly warm area. In about a week, you’ll be able to replant the celery in your garden or in a pot.

If you leave it in water, it will get mushy and start to rot. It may also stink and cause you to deep clean your kitchen looking for what's rotting. So be sure to transplant it into dirt after it starts growing again.

Carrots, Radishes, Turnips, Beets, and Root Vegetables

For root vegetables, simply cut off the top of the vegetable. There the leaves that join the root. Place in a shallow dish of water. The tops should grow in a few days.

You can harvest them and eat them as they grow or transplant them in the garden.


There are tons of herbs that can be regrown using scraps. All you have to do is place the stem, which should be about four inches, of the herb into a cup of water.

Soon, you will have roots growing which can be transplanted into either an outside garden or a container garden. Herbs serve so many purposes in the kitchen, so it is always a good idea to have some on hand.

What’s more, herbs can be grown in small containers on say the kitchen windowsill so you always have quick access to them. They are also relatively low maintenance which is great as that means you can have several herbs without fear of not being able to maintain them.

Using Seeds

Of course, seeds can be used to regrow vegetables and even fruits. In addition to planting the actual plant, regrowing vegetables from scraps can be done with the seeds.

You should never discard seeds as they can either be regrown or in some cases eaten on their own. For example, pumpkin seeds can be roasted into a delicious snack or even used to top recipes.

Some seeds will need to be stored until they are ready to be planted but others can be planted right away. Microgreens can typically be grown right away and are a great addition to any diet.

It’s important to note that most hybrid seeds will not successfully grow a new plant. Heirloom seeds will usually grow, but hybrid seeds will not. Since there’s no way of knowing which ones will work, try using seeds from organic produce for better success.

Research, Research, Research

Before you dive right into growing vegetable scraps and propagating vegetables, you will want to familiarize yourself with how a garden works. Additionally, you will want to delve into the specifics of what you want to plant.

For example, if you are wanting to plant potatoes you will want to heavily research potatoes. You should know when to plant them and what they will need to grow and thrive. Then find out how and when to harvest your potatoes.

You should also know when to harvest them and the signs of spoiled potatoes should that unfortunately happen. Starting a garden is no easy task, but when you research it is easier to prepare and be proactive.

I use a printable garden planter to make a binder. I keep track of what I planted, when I planted, and notes to help me in the future.

How To Maintain Kitchen Scrap Gardening

As you can see there are a few ways to go about regrowing vegetables from scraps, but once it is started you will still have to maintain it. This is going to be the brunt of the garden, and you will need to prepare to maximize your success in your new garden.

After you learn how to grow vegetables from scraps, you will need to find a new spot to have your garden. Gardens can be started in pots and containers or in the ground.

If you plan on having your garden outside, try to find an area with plenty of sunlight but with enough shade to keep your plants cooler in the heat. If your garden is inside make sure you have enough space next to a sunny area, such as near a window.

Again, you will need to research how much water your plants will need and when. I recommend creating a watering schedule that is kept near the plants if they are outdoors, and someplace where you will see it often if they are outside.

This way, you can keep track of when you watered them and note how much that they need when you go to take care of them. This will prevent you from under or overwatering them.

Learn about the best way to water a vegetable garden because it does matter!

Creating a schedule for checking on your plants is important especially when growing from scraps. It can be easy to forget about some roots that are in water or some seeds that are drying out, but if you have a schedule that is less likely to happen.

Growing a garden is an immensely satisfying experience, and you can even grow one from food you more than likely already have! There are a plethora of vegetables that can be used to grow your own garden.

With some research and work, you will be well on your way to having the perfect scrap garden, and gardening like a pro.

How you know how to grow vegetables from scraps!

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Cari @ Homesteading in Ohio
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2 of 8 comments
  • Diane Wuerstlin Diane Wuerstlin on Mar 24, 2024

    I have been growing veggies from scraps for a few years now. I find I have much better luck when I start with organic veggies. I grown lettuce all winter long on my kitchen table.

  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Mar 31, 2024

    Great tips, thank you. I, too, have done this for years and really enjoy a home harvest. One thing I have to be careful about is some of the plants are invasive, so for those, keep them in a mint-an herb of course.